Court rejects application to strike out appeal in Trafigura matter
The Appeal Court has dismissed an application by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) to strike out an appeal filed by lawyers for People's National Party (PNP) President Portia Simpson Miller and other party functionaries that has stalled the Trafigura case.
President of the Appeal Court, Justice Dennis Morrison, who delivered the decision yesterday, also ordered that all proceedings in the Trafigura case be stayed until the appeal is heard.
Attorneys for Simpson Miller, PNP Chairman Robert Pickersgill, PNP Region Three Chairman Phillip Paulwell, former PNP General Secretary Colin Campbell and businessman Norton Hinds had given verbal notice in 2014 that they planned to appeal a court ruling that upheld a decision by Justice Lennox Campbell for the Trafigura case to be heard in open court.
Morrison said the court registrar would be directed to fix a date, in consultation with all parties, for the hearing of the appeal.
On Wednesday, the ODPP asked the Appeal Court to strike out the appeal and argued in court yesterday that since then, the attorneys had done nothing to advance the case.
Dutch officials, acting through the ODPP under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty, want information regarding a $31 million donation to the PNP by oil trading firm Trafigura Beheer.
The donation was made while the PNP was in government and had an oil lifting contract with the Dutch firm.